Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Chicken Pudding, A Favourite Virginia Dish

 I have seen this recipe  a few times while flipping through my copy of "The Virginia Housewife" and have read over it, but never felt inspired to make it,until now. My DH has a thing for puddings & meat pies, so this incorporates both.
So here from Mary Randoldph's The Virginia Housewife, 1838. 

I halved the recipe since making a pudding of four chickens seemed a bit large! For my version I used 4 large eggs (modern eggs are larger), 1 1/2 cups of milk with 1/2 cup of cream (richer flavor), and about a half a stick of butter. 
The recipe suggest four chickens, I used two large chicken breasts with three legs, this gave me plenty of meat for the pudding. I boiled the chicken first as directed with a bundle of fresh thyme & parsley. 
Let the chicken cool while beating the eggs/milk/butter. Add flour to thicken the batter, I am not sure how much I used, I spooned it in, but it was less than half a cup. When the batter is combined, take the meat from the bones in small pieces and add to the batter, stir once to incorporate.  It looks like a thick soup! 
Put the pudding in a 350* oven. Depending on the heat of your oven, this could be anywhere from 30-50 minutes. I took mine out after 35 minutes, and it maybe could have stayed in a few minutes longer. Let it sit for a few minutes to cool & absorb any liquid that may be left. It will be a nice golden brown! 

Chicken Pudding right out of the oven!

I made a nice chicken gravy to serve with the pudding, as suggested, but I didn't think I was going to need it. I served the dish with a side of oven-roasted root vegetables (yummy!). It was still a bit runny when I cut into it, so it could have cooled a while longer. 

There have been a few great successes with my period cooking experiments, and this one seems to be a great hit! DH at almost half of the pudding himself! The gravy was a great addition. The pudding is a bit on the bland side, but I should have added more salt. Overall, this is a great meal! I may have to try it next time I'm cooking in the field! 

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